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DSGMC President claims credit for Dera's apology

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, June 21 (UNI) Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) President Paramjit Singh Sarna, known for his proximity with former Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, today claimed credit for securing an ''apology'' from the Dera Sacha Sauda.

An apology was sought from the Dera for the May 12 blasphemous incident at Salabatpura village in Bathinda District which had sparked violent clashes between Dera followers and the Sikhs.

The 'letter', which tendered an apology to the''Guru Panth'', has been handed over to Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) Chief Avtar Singh for further submission to the Jathedar of the Akal Takht, Mr Sarna told mediapersons at a press conference here.

However, a 'press note' pertaining to the purported apology issued on behalf of Dera, Sirsa states that, ''In the interest of humanity, we tender an apology to Guru Gobind Singh, the true spiritual leader who sacrificed his entire family (sarbansdaani) and the 'Guru Panth''.

The Dera had earlier offered an apology to the tenth Sikh Guru which was rejected by the Jathedar, Akal Takht.

The Sant Samaj led by the Damadami Taksal Chief had staged a march two days ago from Fatehgarh Sahib in Punjab to Chandigarh demanding the arrest of Dera Chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh.

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal himself drove to the Sant Samaj leader to take the memorandum in this regard.

Yesterday, a civil court at Bathinda district headquarters issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against the Dera Chief. The Dera Chief, headquartered at Sirsa in Haryana, has been provided with the highest Z-plus security cover.

The press note further states that, '' our Sant (Dera Chief) claims himself as ''dasso ka dass''(humblest servant) and he can not even imagine to imitate or equate with ''sarbansdaani'' Guru Gobind Singh.'' ''The Dera Sacha Sauda has faith in and adores all religions (sarb-dharam). It strives to achieve its goal of building a high character of people, making them shun intoxicants and eating meat, rise above personal and social discrimination and inspire selfless love and affection among human beings,'' the press note adds.

''During the past few days, unfortunate happenings have taken place which are a matter of concern. The misgivings which have arose therefore, are deplorable.'' ''We sincerely desire that peace and communal amity should prevail in Punjab, Haryana, throughout the country and abroad,'' Mr Sarna said.

Mr Sarna denied charges levelled by Mr Badal that the former was politicalising the Sikhsangat and Dera followers' clashes and said Mr Badal had been using the Dera episode to divert peoples attention away from the real issues and commitments he made to the people during the February election.


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